What are Simple Sharing Extensions?

Simple sharing extensions are a new way to allow applications to communicate bidirectionally with each other using XML based formats like rss and atom. The technology was created by Microsoft to expand the use of Really Simple Syndication among its applications.
The sse extensions were developed by Ray Ozzie, Chief Software Architect at Microsoft, to allow aggregation of information stored in multiple data sources and several formats. The simple sharing extensions project has been re-branded FeedSync and has been used to bring content from Microsoft, Google and other sources to many desktops and mobile devices in a simple and streamlined format.

Aggregators and other rss capable applications will not need to change drastically to support simple sharing extensions because sse will exist within an item’s rss feed. This allows the applications which support the simple sharing extensions technology to make use of sse when item sharing. The idea behind all of the multiplatform aggregation is to allow easy information sharing across devices. For example, with SSE, it is possible that a user will be able to share calendar items, mail, messages, feeds, and links across all of their devices, from the desktop PC, to their mobile phone. Simple sharing extensions allow data published in an atom or rss feed to be continuously synchronized across all devices without requiring a custom application or interface to be installed because the format lives within an existing rss or opml feed.

Allowing information to flow bidirectionally as it is needed and/or used in an open XML format will make information more accessible to more users. Another example of how simple sharing extensions might prove useful follows:
Suppose an information worker has a calendar that he maintains for his job which stores all of his daily appointments. The latest appointment is a dinner meeting with a vendor that has just popped up, but the reception in the meeting room is less than ideal and he cannot reach his family to inform them of the schedule change. For simplicity’s sake, also suppose the calendar has its own iCal (iCalendar) feed and can be accessed by others he has shared it with.

Using simple sharing extensions technology along with the rss feed for the calendar, the employee’s family can be kept up to speed on these changes because the sse and rss technologies would push the new information out to a calendar at his home or in his wife’s office, allowing additional information to arrive on other calendars without the need for refresh.